dessert bite

Apple Cider Donut Holes with Tahini Glaze

Apple Cider Doughnut Holes with Tahini Glaze

I recently sat next to Ben Mims, who introduced me to my new favorite kitchen gadget. It cuts cooking time in half and makes everything crispy with no hassle or oil — IT’S AN AIR FRYER!

After I purchased his book, Air Fry Every Day: 75 Recipes to Fry, Roast, and Bake Using Your Air Fryer, right away, Ben helped me decide which air fryer to purchase; I went ahead with the multi-functional one that combines a convection oven and air fryer because that suits my catering business. I have not stopped using and experimenting with it since I purchased it. I’ve made everything from fried chickpeas to baked muffins!

Inspired by his Apple Cider Doughnut Hole recipe from the cookbook, I came up with this tahini glaze. The glaze adds that nutty, sweet flavors to the crisp, doughnut holes and those toasted sesame seeds on top add a satisfying crunch.

If you are still debating whether you should get an air fryer or not, I highly recommend it. It changed my life! And, check out Ben’s incredible cookbook!

Total Time: 20 minutes
Serves: 10 mini doughnuts

INGREDIENTS

For the doughnut holes:

  • 1 1/2 cup AP flour

  • 2 tbsp sugar

  • 2 tsp baking powder

  • 1 tsp baking soda

  • 1 tsp kosher salt

  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon

  • 1/4 cup buttermilk, chilled

  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar

  • 1 egg

  • Oil spray

Tahini Glaze:

  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar

  • 2 tbsp tahini

  • 2 tbsp water

  • A pinch of salt

  • Toasted sesame seeds for garnish

INSTRUCTIONS

To make the doughnut holes:

  1. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon until well combined. In a separate bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, apple cider vinegar, and egg until combined. Add the wet ingredients to the dry mixture and stir with a spatula or hands until the dough just comes together.

  2. Scoop out 10 to 12 balls onto the air fryer basket, spaced evenly apart, and spray with oil spray. Air-fry at 350F until the doughnut holes are golden brown and fluffy, about 6 - 8 minutes. Transfer the doughnut holes to a wire rack to cool.

To make tahini glaze:

  1. In a small bowl, stir together the powdered sugar, tahini, water, and a pinch of salt until smooth and coats the back of a spoon.

Assembly:

  1. Dip the doughnut holes in the tahini glaze, then sprinkle sesame seeds.

  2. Let them stand until the glaze sets before serving.

Lemon-Semolina Almond Cake

Lemon-Semolina Almond Cake

I recently came across Ottolenghi’s Semolina-Lemon Syrup Cakes, and it reminded me of my grandmother’s semolina cake; she used to make it for me all the time when I was growing up!

Inspired by Ottolenghi's recipe, I added rosewater to simple syrup for a Middle Eastern touch to this cake. The cake, paired with candied lemon slices and drizzled with rosewater simple syrup, has a coarse texture, making it a wonderfully versatile dessert. Whether you want to eat this with a scoop of ice cream or with a cup of coffee for breakfast, this lemony cake will be your new favorite!

Total Time: 1 hr 30 minutes
Serves: 8 - 12 slices

INGREDIENTS

Lemon-Semolina Almond Cake:

  • 1 cup almond flour or almond meal

  • 1 cup semolina flour

  • 1 tsp baking powder

  • 1 tsp kosher salt

  • 3/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 2 lemons

  • 3 large eggs, beaten to blend

Rosewater Simple Syrup:

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 1 cup water

  • 1 lemon, juiced

  • 2 tbsp rosewater

Candied Lemon:

  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced

INSTRUCTIONS

Lemon-Semolina Almond Cake:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350F.

  2. Grease a loaf pan and line with parchment paper. Sift together the almond flour, semolina flour and baking powder on a medium bowl. Add salt to the mixture and whisk everything to combine.

  3. Using an electric mixer with a whisk attachment, whisk oil, sugar, and lemon zest from 2 lemons together, about 3 minutes. With motor running, gradually add eggs one at a time, beating to incorporate, about 1 minute. Add dry ingredients and juice of 1 lemon and whisk everything to combine, about 1 minute.

  4. Transfer batter to prepared loaf pan. Place the cake on the middle rack, and bake until golden brown, approximately for 60 minutes. Lightly press the top of the cake to test — it should feel lightly springy when done. Let cool for 20 minutes or so in pan before removing and transferring to a cooling rack.

Rosewater Simple Syrup & Candied Lemon:

  1. In one easy step, combine water, sugar, juice of 1 lemon, and rosewater in a pot. Cook it over medium-heat until the sugar is fully dissolved, for 4-5 minutes.

  2. Add thinly-sliced lemon to the simple syrup, and cook it on medium-low heat for 10-12 minutes until the lemon is tender.

  3. Transfer candied lemon to a wire rack.

Assembly:

  1. Drizzle rosewater over a cake. Garnish the cake with candied lemon slices on top.

Salted Tahini Chocolate Tart (GF)

Salted Tahini Chocolate Tart (GF)

I spent some time last week in the kitchen with the wonderful Rachel Simons - one of the three brains behind my favorite tahini, Seed and Mill! We used my background as the inspiration for this gluten free dessert. With an oat gluten free crust, tahini, and dried rose petals this is the perfect chocolate bite! We made this tart two ways: a large tart you can serve at your next dinner party, or mini tarts to accompany your coffee. Check out Rachel's amazing work right here!!

Enjoy the recipe - comment below and let me know if you try it out!

Photos by Edouard Massih & Rachel Simons

Total Time: 45 minutes
Serves: 10-12 people

Gluten Free Oat Crust:

  • 1.5 cup old-fashioned oats

  • .75 cup almond flour

  • 1/2 cup butter, melted

  • 1/2 cup honey

  • 1 tsp kosher salt

  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon

Tahini Chocolate Filling:

  • 11.5 oz dark chocolate chips

  • 11.5 oz milk chocolate chips

  • 2 cup heavy cream

  • 1/4 cup tahini

  • 2 tbsp rosewater

Salted Topping:

  • Flaky sea salt

  • Any nut & seeds (pistachio, pistachio seeds, almonds, sesame seeds)

INSTRUCTIONS

Crust:

1.    Preheat the oven to 350F. In a food processor, pulse the oats, whole wheat flour, butter, honey, salt, and cinnamon until ground and wet sand like. 

2.   Press the crust mixture into desired tart shell. Bake until golden brown, and crispy about 25-30 minutes (10-15 min for mini).

3.    When ready, transfer to a wired rack and let the crust cool. 

Filling:

1.      Pour the cream into a small saucepan, and bring to a boil. 

2.     Place the chocolate into a large bowl, and pour the cream over it. Let it sit for 2 minutes until the chocolate has softened are start mixing the chocolate mixture. 

3.     Add tahini, and rosewater. Mix until chocolate has been fully incorporated, and the chocolate filling is thick and smooth. 

4.     Pour the chocolate filling into the tart crust, tap the tart against the countertop to pop any air bubbles. 

5.     Place the tart in the fridge, and let chill for 1-2 hours. 

6.     To serve: When ready let the tart come to room temperature for 20 minutes. Slice the tart with a warm knife, Finish with sea salt, nuts, and seeds. 

Cheers!